Interview: Bisola

Sep 09 2020

Award-winning British singer songwriter Bisola recently released her latest single 'We Ain't Gonna Lose'. Louder Than The Music spent some time chatting with this talented singer to find out more about her music, how the pandemic affected her recording plans, and what she has in store for the rest of the year.

For those who haven't heard of you before, can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got involved in making music?

I'm a singer songwriter based in the UK. I've loved singing since I was a kid and was always involved in school, church choirs and the like. I'd also been writing songs for years but never really knew what to do with them as I didn't come from a musical family or know anyone in the music industry so I'd just write the songs and they'd 'sit on the shelf gathering dust' but one day after a long, hard conversation with God, I finally realised I needed to be sharing these songs with others to encourage and inspire people as well as bring light to dark places. I took a leap of faith to send one of my tracks to Premier Christian Radio just to see if they would consider giving it a spin and would you believe it the song got selected as Track of the week for one of their shows called The Unsigned Show! Wow, I remember being over the moon when it happened and telling all my friends so they could tune in to the show to listen in when my track was played. That was a huge validation for me confirming what God had been saying to my heart about sharing my music and not keeping them to myself. I was like 'okay God, I hear you loud and clear' That was back in 2012 and that really how my professional singer songwriter journey started. Looking back now I do believe all the years prior when I was writing and singing in the background, it was all part of my learning and growing process so I'm appreciative of that

Tell us about your new single 'We Ain't Gonna Lose' and what the inspiration behind it was?

I wrote 'We Ain't Gonna Lose' a few weeks into lockdown in the UK. It was really at the height of the pandemic when we were hearing all these scary numbers literally everyday about Covid cases and people being impacted in so many different ways. It was all very surreal and trying to see a way through and imagine how it would all pan out was tough but after a point I was like no, God's still God. He's still sovereign. No sickness or disease has the power over us if he's on our side. I just felt like we had to stand up and declare His truths to ourselves and over the situation. I really wanted to remind people about the word of God so you'll notice word for word verses of the scriptures in the song 'cos I wanted it to be as close to His word as possible without diluting it with my own words.

Once I finished writing the song, I felt I had to get it recorded and released as quickly as possible but of course with the lockdown situation there were so many restrictions in place, so trying to get to my music producer and to the music studio to do the recording was a challenge. We didn't want to break any social distancing rules and neither did I want to put anyone at risk so we had to do loads of things remotely. Things took much longer than I anticipated but I believe all things work together for good. Perhaps if I'd released the track too soon, people's experience of the pandemic might've been still too raw and too fresh to allow them to emotionally connect with the song. Either way I'm glad we managed to get the track recorded and released. It's been really encouraging hearing some of the positive feedback from people about it. I'm truly grateful for that

Do you have any plans to release more music in the near future?

Yes I'm planning to re-release my Christmas track this year. It's conveniently titled 'This Christmas' . I'm trying to emulate Mariah Carey who re-releases her famous Christmas track every year, I mean the song (All I want for Christmas) is now part and parcel of almost everyone's Christmas memories! So yeah I'm starting my own tradition by re-releasing my Christmas track - if it's good enough for Mariah, it's good enough for me ha, ha.

What message would you like people to take from your music?

I think the key thing is that God cares about every aspect and detail of our lives. I sometimes get the sense that many people compartmentalise their lives and only share with God specific areas perhaps because they don't feel comfortable opening up those areas to Him. I mean it's easy to engage with God when we're in Church and with other believers but in the everyday mundane activities like going to work, doing the house chores, watching TV, it's like we forget God's there too. For me I think it's important to be just as conscious of God in those times too - we should be in an ongoing, unbroken conversation with Him where He's interwoven into every part of our lives so that when life's challenges come, you're somehow in a better position to handle them better because you've been walking with Him every step of the way and can better see those situations from through His eyes as well as more easily trust that He's still with you.

How would you describe your style of music and what are your influences?

I tend to describe myself as an inspirational artist as I love to write about everyday experiences, challenges and emotions which we all go through but always through a Christian perspective. I love finding ways to bring the scriptures to life in a way that anyone can connect with whether or not they are Christians. My influences range from great singers and performers like Whitney Houston, Yolanda Adams and Aretha Franklin to amazing songwriters like Matt Redman, Stevie Wonder and Darlene Zschech

If you could work with any songwriter, who would it be and why?

It would be great to work with Darlene Zschech. Her songs pretty much laid the foundation for modern Christian contemporary music and what Hillsong is today. More importantly you feel the purity of her heart, her love for God and for worshipping Him emanating through her songs. I've seen her perform a few times live as well and you can just feel the anointing flowing through her. It'd be wonderful to get to work with her for sure

How would you define success in your career as an artist?

For me it's simply doing the things that God's calling me to do through my music. Specifically that means writing the songs He wants me to write and using those songs as a channel to bring hope and the good news of the gospel to everyone no matter where they are

You're stuck on an island, it's hot, you only have enough battery life left to listen to one song on your phone. What track is it?

Oh wow that's a really tough question. I love so many different songs for some many different reasons and it's difficult to only have one that you'd want to listen to on repeat whilst waiting to be rescued from the island (I'm assuming I do get rescued right? lol)... I sure hope the island has some nice beaches and food at least to help me stay occupied! Hmmm ok maybe I'd go for a Nigerian praise medley 'cos they weave in several songs into one track and the track just goes on and on - sometimes for up to 20 minutes. Yeah that's the trick - go for a song that's really like 10 songs in one mashed up together!

What does the next year hold for you?

I'm looking to release more new music next year by God's grace. I've been steadily writing new songs over the course of this year and I don't think it'd be right to sit on them for too long so I'm definitely aiming to do some releases next year. It'll be good to release an album actually as my last few releases have been singles but ultimately I need to pray into this and see how God leads - that's what's most important!

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